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Microsoft Excel 2003 Cell Formatting

Shrink a Cell's Value to Fully Display Onscreen

Summary: Automatically shrink the font size of Excel 2003 spreadsheet cells so the values fit onscreen.

When entering large numbers inside Microsoft Excel 2003 spreadsheets, you may have noticed that some numbers too large to fit onscreen are instead replaced with rounded values or numbers in scientific notation. Likewise, large text values may be replaced with # symbols.

To "fix" this problem you can simply increase the cell's column size, but this may cause other visual problems and/or push some of the spreadsheet cells onto another page if printed. You can also forcibly shrink the font size of a particular cell, but what if the value changes often and you do not wish to constantly manage this?

Instead, you can shrink the font size of a cell or group of cells so the values fit onscreen. To do so:

1. Highlight a cell or group of cells.

2. Select "Format" - "Cells" or right-click and choose "Format Cells".

3. When the "Format Cells" multi-tabbed dialog box appears, click the "Alignment" tab.

4. Underneath "Text control", click the "Shrink to fit" button.

5. Click "OK" to close the dialog box.

Note the Excel 2003 snapshot to the right. Samantha Connor's name in cell A5 is normally too big to fit inside column A, so the font has been automatically shrunk. Same with the sales value in cell B3.

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Last Modified on: August 18, 2008, at 8:28 A.M. EDT

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